Announcing a night to salute Dorothy Parker in her old neighborhood, the Upper East Side of Manhattan. Come out on Monday, February 15, 7pm, to Barnes & Noble, 150 E. 86th Street, for the “Writers on Writers” series. The “Dorothy Parker Post-Valentine Recovery Night” will feature brief talks about Parker by Marion Meade (editor of the Portable Dorothy Parker and author of Dorothy Parker: What Fresh Hell Is This?) and Kevin C. Fitzpatrick (author of A Journey into Dorothy Parker’s New York and president of the DPS). With a reading by Miss M, Emily Linstrom. There will also be book signings and author Q&A. Cocktail reception to follow at Elaine’s. Open to the public.
Wit's End is the hottest vintage party in New York, and the Dorothy Parker Society is pleased to be a small part of the 2010 activities that are planned. Wit’s End was launchd by Diane Naegel and Don Spiro, a couple who have made vintage their own personal style. Diane is a designer and the publisher of Zelda, the “magazine of the vintage nouveau.” Don is a noted writer and photographer, he is the official photographer of the Burlesque Hall of Fame and teaches photography.
Wit’s End has a new home, Flute Midtown, 205 West 54th Street (at Seventh Avenue). Flute was at one time during Prohibition a real speakeasy; one of the proprietors was the legendary Texas Guinan. It’s only appropriate that the new home of Wit’s End is Flute.
“Starting in 2010, each month will feature a different aspect of early 20th century culture,” Don says. “January’s Wit’s End will be an homage to South Seas influences like the ukulele and tropical themed songs. Hollywood glamour, the Ziegfeld Follies, Jazz Age writers, and more will highlight future evenings.”
Diane and Don were kind enough to answer some questions for us. If you want to participate, the Wit’s End party is the last Saturday of the month at Flute, starting January 30th.
Q: What's the history behind Wit's End? How did it start?
Diane: Well, Don and I had been attending Dances of Vice for some time—the event our pal Shien Lee runs—and after awhile she wanted to branch off and do parties with a lot of various themes instead of just hosting Jazz Age parties. Since the Jazz Age events were always our favorite, we thought it would be great to have a consistent monthly club that catered to that genre—and so Wit's End was born! We wanted to make the event that we really wanted to go to; and for us that meant a place that would have live and recorded music of the era, great cocktails of the time, evening attire, and quality people: lucky for us, everything has come true!
Don: I used to shoot photos at Bricktop’s, a friend’s Jazz Age club night in Hollywood. Shien Lee would attend. When Shien moved to New York she started Dances of Vice, the closest thing New York had to Bricktop’s. That’s where my friend Jen, who had produced a one-time only Bricktop’s night in Manhattan with NYU, introduced me to Diane. When Shien started taking it in new directions we loved it, but we also missed the pure Jazz Age aspect, so Diane and I started Wit’s End. Also, we wanted to cross promote our interests: we love boutique cocktails, dressing up to go on the town, dancing with partners, discussing history, listening to live Jazz Age music and we wanted a night where you could do all that together. It was just a club we wanted to attend, but no one else was doing it regularly so we started it. Also, I feel there is plenty of Manhattan clubs with a late 20th Century feel (and I love music from the ‘50s to the ‘90s), but no clubs represented the Jazz Age. By the way, our first performer at Wit’s End was Shien.
Q: Why do you think there is an interest in this time period, 1920s-1940s?
Diane: I certainly think that people are looking back to the Depression given the financial circumstances of our time today—looking at the values of that time, the films, the music, and style. I think we've gotten so casual in the way we dress today that there's a fascination with any era that showed a different way of presenting oneself to the world. I think it's easier to understand that in the ‘20s and after because it’s more relevant to modern dressing than some earlier eras. I also think that the music is pretty infectious! When you’re on hard times, its great to hear that uplifting sound that anyone can relate to—even if you've never heard it before.
Don: I think there’s a general interest in everything that is in the past, everything that came before us led us to the present. My favorite time period is the present; I prefer nostalgia through modern convenience. I love playing Duke Ellington and Annette Hanshaw on my iPod, I can buy Dorothy Parker books online, and I can print our Prohibition cocktail menu from my computer. With modern technology we have more access to the past than ever, our earliest records of pop culture in film and audio are from the 1910s and 1920s, so that set the standard. I think people particularly like the Jazz and swing age because of the style and the art that shows in the music and films that people remember. People today didn’t personally have to deal with the Depression, prejudice, and hardships of the early 20th Century; they focus on the nostalgia and glamour. After WWI life was a celebration until the stock market crashed, after that the New Deal funded a huge output of artistic creation, and those highlights stick in our memory. That Jazz Age was a golden age for America; for the first time Americana spread all over the world. It was a youth culture, morals were relaxed, people traveled more, and minorities became more empowered. We had celebrities. The world looked to the U.S. for the lead in fashion, industry, technology, music… just about everything, and anything seemed possible. On a generational level, I find more and more young people are into the time period than before. They really glamorize the era, they are too young to have heard stories from relatives who lived through the times, but they see it through movies and TV. They also realize that Jazz was the punk of its day, and dancing with a partner can be more fun that the solitary freeform moves their parents call dance. They appreciate that things made to last have more value than things that are simply new, and that many of the fashions of the 1920s and 1930s simply never go out of style. Decades old swing and blues songs are still recorded by top forty pop stars, the newest style is reimagining the old.
Q: At a Wit's End party, what can one expect to happen?
Diane: If you come early, you’ll start out grabbing a bite (some free hors d’oeuvres at the bar or ordering dinner from Flute) and mingling with other guests. Then there’s a free dance lesson—usually Charleston, Balboa, or basic Lindy—that happens before the band goes on. The band plays two sets during the evening, and the rest of the time is filled with period danceable music playing. We’ve added some fun giveaways to the lineup as well, and of course, there are amazing cocktails to enjoy and great conversation to have the entire time! I think I imagine it as a modern interpretation of what some clubs of the ‘20s/’30s might have been like: some people dancing, some mingling or lounging, most drinking, and all making that extra effort to look fantastic!
Don: Flute Midtown is an authentic Prohibition era speakeasy, once run by Texas Guinan, and that sets the tone. You can expect a lot of people having fun, dancing to the hot jazz or talking over cocktails. You won’t see jeans or baseball caps; the dress code is enforced to keep the mood. Some people are in vintage attire but it isn’t a costume affair, most are in modern suits and dresses, adding to the atmosphere. The music is paced for dancing. It’s also an early night by New York standards, so you can enjoy yourself for a few hours then go to a late night bar or show.
Q: You always have fantastic live entertainment, whom can we expect to see at the parties in 2010?
Don: There are so many great bands that we want to showcase and expose to our patrons, deciding is always a tough choice because we are only once a month. We have been proud to feature bands like Baby Soda and Cynthia Sayer, and I would love to bring in bands from the West Coast and Europe someday, too. And there are always surprises: last October we were fortunate enough to have Michael Arenella and Drew Nugent stop by to join Gelber and Manning for an after hours jam that will be hard for others to top. We also want to collaborate more with other events. Last year we provided a specialty cocktail to the Salon at the Player’s Club and produced a Speakeasy Night for the Museum of the City of New York. We plan to keep cross promoting Dances of Vice, the Art Deco Society of New York, the Dorothy Parker Society and, if things go well, we hope to be involved with organizations around the country, perhaps the world
Q: Vintage theme attire is encouraged. Where can one shop for the right outfit?
Diane: There are a lot of outlets to find vintage today, but for me, I've had the best luck on eBay, shopping online, flea markets, and a handful of finds in shops here in town. As far as NYC, I've had the most luck at the Chelsea Flea Market, Cobblestones on East 9th, and The Family Jewels on 23rd. (I have to admit, a lot of my vintage attire is bought in Los Angeles, Ohio, and I recently found great stuff in Austin, Texas.) It's always a treasure hunt, and a challenge to find that dress that will fit you AND be what you're looking for! The first issue of Zelda has a great NYC shopping guide, too. Although I will mention that there are a lot of dresses and other articles of clothing made today that can be festive and fun for our night when styled the right way. We love vintage, but we know it's tough to get a hold of and certainly don't require it. Dress well, and in the spirit of the era, and you're good to go. We don't think of it as costume, but rather just taking an evening to really dress in your finest!
Don: There are a lot of great places for women to find vintage wear. It’s much harder for men but, luckily, menswear hasn’t changed style too much. Wear what you likely have in your closet: a dress shirt and business suit will work just fine. I have vintage, but when I wear a modern suit I just add suspenders, a pocket square, or a vintage tie to aid the proper look.
Thanks to Diane and Don, and we hope to see you at Wit’s End in 2010. All information and a calendar of events about Wit's End is here. Saturday, Jan. 30: Twilight Tropicale brings you the hottest Hawaiian tunes of the Jazz Age (and some snazzy originals) from our pals The Moonlighters! They're brushing up on some old favorites- you don't want to miss this one! FREE HORS D'OEUVRES AT THE BAR FROM 7-8PM! Flute Bar features some delicious bites- come early for dinner before dancing off those nibbles! FREE DANCE LESSON at 830pm! We're now going until MIDNIGHT! $12 door, 21+
Scribner recently published a new edition of Not Much Fun: The Lost Poems of Dorothy Parker. This is exciting because it is an updated version of the 1996 book. Editor/Compiler Stuart Y. Silverstein gave the DPS an exclusive new interview about the book, and he will be in New York City in January to talk about it and sign copies:
Sun Jan 10 - 4:00 PM - Idlewild Books - 12 W 19 St, NY 10011 (212-414-8888)
These are two fantastic independent bookstores. The Dorothy Parker Society will be out in full force for both events, with a meeting directly to follow both author appearances. We hope you will come out for the talks.
Long Branch, NJ - "Long Branch, a town that may not know who Bob Dylan is, but certainly knows who Dorothy Parker was," said Kevin Fitzpatrick, founder and president of the National Dorothy Parker Society and co-editor of The Lost Algonquin Round Table, in reference to the recent failure to recognize the music legend by a rookie policeman, at the fourth annual Dorothy Parker Day.
Parker was a poet writer, humanitarian and dog lover, best known for her caustic wit. The day began with readings and dramatic interpretations of Parker’s works by local authors and historians at the Long Branch Public Library and a Parker Lookalike Contest.
Fittingly, The City of Long Branch celebrated Mrs. Parker's premature birth on August 22, 1893, one week early on August 16. The day was sponsored by the Long Branch Arts Council, Long Branch Public Library, West End Merchants Society and the NJ Chapter of the Dorothy Parker Society. Events continued with a luncheon special at Jesse's Natural Foods on Brighton Avenue in West End complete with a complimentary poem read with each meal, a Dog Parade beginning at St. Michael's Catholic Church with a blessing of the animals and a walk past Dorothy Parker's birthplace on Ocean Avenue, where her family's summer cottage once stood.
The day concluded with an eclectic crowd of authors, historians, academics, thespians, and Parker fans mingling at the Mix Lounge on Brighton Avenue for a cocktail party. One couple came as far as Virginia for the event.
In the hot afternoon sun, Director of The Long Branch Arts Council, Gabe Barbaras, thanked the dogs for bringing their owners to St. Michael's for the walk, a Dorothy Parker Day annual tradition. Each dog received a doggie treat bag that was prepared by Joelle Aponte, president of the New Jersey chapter of the DPS. Several dogs were interviewed with their human spokespersons. Jay Kulin and Joe Reale of Long Branch, who recently adopted Diesel, an American Pitt Bull Terrier, who wore a small bottle of fine malt whiskey around his collar. A black and white Shitsu named "Dulcie Dog" who was dressed in pearls, also attended. According to her owner, she often "prances around with Dorothy’s restless energy."
Aponte said that the Jersey chapter hasn't been on a mission since its inception in 2005, other than to participate in the planning of D Day. "Kevin (Fitzpatrick) dubbed us President and Vice President, since we were the only two that showed up," referring to Laura Greenstone, Vice President.
“Very soon Dorothy Parker will be to the Jersey Shore literary reputation, what Springsteen is to music," Fitzpatrick said. "Dorothy Parker can be nominated to join the New Jersey Hall of Fame, and we want her to join people like Frank Sinatra in the Hall. It is another opportunity to get Long Branch on the map. We will be voting again in 2010."
After being approached by many people who attended the day about membership, Aponte and Greenstone held an executive board meeting and voted to make the 2010 NJ Hall of Fame the mission of The Society. To join the society and vote for Dorothy Parker for the NJ Hall of Fame, log onto dorothyparker.com/nj
Saturday is Dorothy Parker’s birthday, and for the 11th straight year, we are going to the Algonquin Hotel to mark the occasion. If you want to take part, we have a whole day planned of activities:
12-2 Algonquin Round Table Walking Tour. Meet in the lobby at 11:45 and take a two-hour walk around the neighborhood, seeing the places that are associated with the Vicious Circle. Former speakeasies, old theaters, saloons, and offices from The New Yorker, the Times, and Vanity Fair. We wrap up at the hotel around 2. Kevin C. Fitzpatrick, author of A Journey into Dorothy Parker’s New York and co-editor of the new book, The Lost Algonquin Round Table, leads the walk. Cost is $20 and info is all here.
2-4:30 Algonquin Lobby: Birthday cake and drinks to honor Dorothy Parker. Also get copies of Fitzpatrick’s new book, The Lost Algonquin Round Table. Cash bar. We may sing the Dorothy Parker Birthday Song.
5:00: Dedication of bronze plaque at 310 West 80th Street, at Dorothy Parker’s teenage home. Join us as we erect the first plaque on any of Mrs. Parker’s many former residences in Manhattan. Bring your own liquid refreshment to celebrate; we will adjourn to nearby Riverside Park to commiserate and talk Parker, and read some of her work. Free and open to the public.
If you have any questions, just email Kevin Fitzpatrick, Kevin (AT) dorothyparker (DOT) Com or follow him on Twitter, k72ndst
Prohibition Party - Drink and Dance to Swinging 20s Music
Wednesday, August 26, 6:00pm - 9:00pm
Hey, all you swing dancers and jazz aficionados; Club Wit's End is teaming with the Museum of the City of New York! On Wednesday, August 26, Yehoodite DJ Jason Ganetsky is spinning music from the Jazz Age era from 6-9pm. Akemi Kinukawa will teach 1920s style Charleston followed by Prohibition era jazz. And there’s more: Each month Wit’s End features a different live band, so at the museum we will have live music by the Moonlighters quartet.
There will be specialty cocktails of the era and author Kevin Fitzpatrick, president of the Dorothy Parker Society, will speak briefly about speakeasies in New York during Prohibition and will be signing copies of the new book he is the co-editor of The Lost Algonquin Round Table, 50 pieces written by the Round Table. This new collection presents, for the first time, many pieces from family collections and long-lost periodicals.
Fifth Avenue Terrace - Museum of City of New York 1220 Fifth Avenue (Museum Mile on Fifth Ave and 103rd), New York, NY Museum Members: $10 | Non-Members: $12 Admission includes one FREE drink and access to the Museum's first-floor galleries.
No reservations, tickets sold at the door. Rain or shine!
Come out to dance and drink spirits inspired from the era. Vintage costume or repro is encouraged to help recreate that period.
The Dorothy Parker Day Committee in Long Branch, New Jersey, Mrs. Parker’s birthplace, has put out this press release about activities on Sunday, Aug. 16, 2009. If you are traveling from Penn Station, take the train to Long Branch, on the New Jersey Coast Line. A $5 cab will get you to the library and events. If you are driving, Long Branch is just minutes off the parkway, about 1 hour south of the city or 90 minutes from Philadelphia.
4th Annual Dorothy Parker Day is Aug. 16
LONG BRANCH, NJ -- She was one of the most famous cynics in American literary history, and a tireless advocate for civil rights. A frequent critic of the popular culture, and an Oscar-nominated screenwriter. A continuously socializing, hard-drinking, clothing-optional sort who loved nothing more than quality time spent with her dogs.
Dorothy Parker was “complicated” back when that really stood for something. And, to further complicate her legacy, she was a “true New Yorker” who was born in Long Branch, New Jersey.
Sunday, August 16 marks the observance of the annual Dorothy Parker Day in the seaside city, presented by the Long Branch Arts Council and the Long Branch Historical Association, in collaboration with The Long Branch Free Public Library, the West End Merchants Association, and our friends at the Dorothy Parker Society.
Nearly 116 years after she made her entrance as Dorothy Rothschild (inside a West End summer cottage on August 22, 1893) the legendary fiction writer, poet, essayist, commentator and charter member of the Algonquin Round Table remains one of the most famous American women of the 20th century, and certainly one of the most oft-quoted wits of all time. And for the fourth time, the city of Long Branch, where a unique-to-New Jersey monument marks the site of her birthplace, embraces its prodigal daughter with a summer’s day celebration as Dorothy herself would have liked it; a celebration with wise words, humorous stories, lots of dogs and a gathering of good friends.
The day begins at 11:00 a.m. inside the Long Branch Free Public Library at 328 Broadway, with a free program of readings and performance pieces coordinated by Ingrid Bruck, and delivered by a collection of fans, friends from the community and even a few city officials. Actors from the New Jersey Repertory Company will perform in a skit written by Parker, local high school students will screen their original video on Long Branch in the Roaring Twenties, and refreshments will be provided at the event.
The Dorothy Parker Society’s Kevin C. Fitzpatrick will be on hand, signing and offering advance copies of his new book The Lost Algonquin Round Table, co-edited with Round Table descendent Nat Benchley. The book, a volume of previously uncollected writings by Mrs. Parker and her contemporaries, will be made available for pre-publication purchase at $20 per copy. Also reading at the event and offering copies of her books will be Monmouth County historian Helen Pike.
At 2:00 p.m., the action moves across town to St. Michael’s Church on Takanassee Lake, where the yearly Dorothy Parker Dog Parade departs from the church parking area on North Lake Drive. Deacon Eugene Somma of St. Michael’s will conduct a Blessing of the Pets, after which dogs and owners of all shapes and sizes are invited to participate in a walk around scenic Takanassee Lake and along Ocean Avenue to the site of Parker’s Birthplace marker. As always, participants are encouraged to dress their dog as a favorite literary character. There will be prizes awarded to the best-dressed canines and the first 30 dogs to attend will be given “doggie gift bags” of items from the area’s most exclusive dog boutiques. Dog-less walkers are invited as well to this fabulously free and fun event!
A number of local restaurants and taverns in the West End section of Long Branch will be joining in the fun as well, with Dorothy Day lunch specials offered between the library and Dog Parade events, and an unofficial after-party cocktail reception hosted at the conclusion of the parade. Information on these events will be available at the library program on August 16.
Beth Woolley of the Long Branch Historical Association is available for media interviews regarding this event and Dorothy Parker¹s ongoing association with Long Branch. Beth can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org. The web site of the Dorothy Parker Society has an informative section on her history in Long Branch, as well as an archived map of the Dog Parade route, and general information on Dorothy Parker Day in Long Branch can be obtained by calling (732) 229-3166.
The Long Branch Arts Council is a partnership dedicated to working with the city government, civic and business organizations and the arts community to re-establish the City of Long Branch as a thriving regional center for the arts. Our aim is to accomplish this goal by attracting artists and arts organizations, by coordinating fundraising and development efforts, by establishing arts education programs, and by presenting arts-oriented events that draw upon the natural resources, accessibility, historic assets and “people power” that are unique to our beloved city.
Sunday, Aug. 16, 11 AM, Long Branch Free Public Library, 328 Broadway Long Branch, NJ 07740 732.222.3900. As part of the annual Dorothy Parker Day, Kevin C. Fitzpatrick will give a talk, reading and book signing. Free. Open to the public.
Wednesday, Aug. 19, 6 PM, The Corner Bookstore, 1313 Madison Avenue, at E. 93rd Street, New York, NY 10128. (212) 831-3554. Official book launch and reception party. Editors Nat Benchley & Kevin C. Fitzpatrick will be on hand with special guests. Books will be available for purchase and signing. Free. Open to the public.
Thursday, Aug. 20, 8 PM, Don’t Tell Mama, 343 W. 46th Street, New York, NY 10036. Big Night Out presents the “1930s Idol” cabaret competition. Kevin C. Fitzpatrick will be signing/selling copies of the book plus is a judge in the show. Two drink minimum. Open to the public. Reservations encouraged: 212-757-0788.
Saturday, Aug. 22, 12 PM, Algonquin Hotel, 59 W. 44th Street, New York, NY, 10036. Algonquin Round Table Walking Tour. Editor Kevin C. Fitzpatrick has led this literary walking tour for ten years. Walk in the footsteps of the Vicious Circle and see the locations they visited, from speakeasies to old haunts. Cost is $20 ea. At 3 p.m. in the lobby will be a book signing, followed by a small celebration to mark Dorothy Parker’s birthday today. Reservations encouraged: 212-222-7239.
Sunday, Sept. 27, 12 PM, Governors Island (Colonel’s Row). The Jazz Age Lawn Party and Roaring Twenties Party. Live music by Michael Arenella and the Dreamland Orchestra. Book signing 12-3 PM. $5 admission. Open to the public. info here.
In Brooklyn? Want to go to Parkerfest? Now you do not have to go to Manhattan to catch the free ferry over to Governors Island. A new route connects Brooklyn. This week State Senator Daniel Squadron's office sent out the following letter:
I am writing to share some exciting news- this summer there will finally be free ferry service between Brooklyn and Governors Island!
This ferry is something that Senator Squadron has long requested to better connect the Brooklyn Waterfront with the rest of New York Harbor, and we hope that you will be able to celebrate with him at the ferry's innaugural launch this Saturday, June 6 at 11:00 am, at Fulton Ferry Landing.
The ferry will leave Fulton Ferry Landing every hour, every Saturday when there is programming scheduled for Governors Island. It will stop at Governors Island and Battery Park in Manhattan.
Going to the island is one of the best trips in the city; with the live music and activities as part of the Jazz Age Lawn Party that Michael Arenella has planned, it is a weekend not to be missed.
June 6 & 7 – The 11th Annual Parkerfest. This will be on Governors Island (June 7 is also the anniversary of Mrs. Parker’s death in 1967). Come attend a huge Roaring Twenties weekend, with vintage clothes, automobiles, live jazz and outdoor cocktail parties. The Governors Island Jazz Age Lawn Party is produced by Michael Arenella, who will lead his famous Dreamland Orchestra in “hot-and-sweet” period music. Vintage attire is encouraged, and there is a wide range of fun things to do both days. All information about the schedule of activities, which runs from 11 AM to 5 PM, can be found on Michael’s site.
This is the second year in a row that we have taken the free ferry to this wonderful new city park (until 1996 Governors Island was a military base). Depart from the Battery Maritime Building, which is located at the corner of South and Whitehall Streets, adjacent to the Staten Island Ferry Terminal. The nearest subway is the 1 to South Ferry or the R & W to Whitehall/South Ferry. The boats depart every hour on the hour starting at 10 AM. Complete ferry and island information is here.
Some practical information for visiting Governors Island: -The Lawn Party is held in front of Colonel’s Row, west of Castle Clinton, about 10 minutes’ walk from the ferry dock (golf cart shuttle may run) -Bring a picnic lunch, as there are no restaurants on the island -Bring a blanket or lawn chair -Island vendors sell water, juice, soda -There is no ATM, so bring cash, as there will be vendors selling vintage clothing, hats, and more. -Pets are not allowed; this would displease Mrs. Parker -Alcohol is banned; if you must, think “hip flask”
Look for the DPS sign at the lawn party. We will be there from roughly Noon to 4 both days.
Reservations are not necessary. The ferry ride and Parkerfest are free. However, due to budget cuts on Governors Island, the hat is being passed to help fund the entertainment. We suggest donating $5 to $10 per person. See photos and video from previous Parkerfest weekends here.
We received word from Adrienne, our West Coast major domo, that there are many things to look forward to this summer there. Take it away Adrienne (who can be reached at Adrienne (AT SIGN) dorothyparker (DOT) com.
The Dorothy Parker Society Los Angeles chapter is back from the dead this summer. Here are some activities to enjoy:
1. Cocktails in Historic Places™ Friday, June 19, 2009 at 6:30--6:45 p.m., event starts at 6 but I don't get off of work til 6 PM La Grande Orange Cafe 260 S. Raymond Avenue Pasadena, CA 91105 626-356-4444
La Grande Orange Cafe is housed in Pasadena's historic 1935 Del Mar Station, listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Dorothy Parker frequently disembarked from the Pasadena station when taking the train in from the East during the 30s and 40s. Legend has it that a car from the Garden of Allah, DP's favorite Hollywood hotel, would collect guests from this station. Who knows...
Let's join the Art Deco Society of LA for no-host cocktails on June 19th for an evening with like-minded people at their Cocktails in Historic Places™ event for June. The event is open to members and non-members alike and reservations are not required. Located near the Gold Line, why not take the train?
2. If Pasadena is too far for you westsiders, let's reconvene on Saturday, June 20 at 4 PM at the charming La Senora Research Institute in Boca Santa Monica Canyon. The Institute is housed in a home once owned by Anita Loos and her brother. Peter Graves will be the featured speaker at a screening of Airplane in the Institute's Teatro del Canyon. Cost $20.75. You must pre-purchase tickets online. Hurry, seats fill up fast. La Senora (565 Dryad Road, Santa Monica) is located in the serene Santa Monica Canyon where lies the creek from which the City of Santa Monica took its name. Legend tells that a Spanish Solider with the first exploration party drank from the meandering creek running through our Canyon and exclaimed that: "The water is as sweet as the tears of St. Monica."
From the Coast Highway drive up the Canyon along Entrada to San Lorenzo.
From Santa Monica take 7th Street across San Vicente. Start down the hill and, while on the big curve, turn right onto San Lorenzo.
3. Finally, let's have a picnic! I'm soliciting dates for a fun picnic in July or August at the Coldwater Canyon Park, just a few miles from where Mrs. Parker lived off Coldwater Canyon Blvd around 1938. Let me know which month works and what dates work and we'll schedule it.
Also taking suggestions for ways to celebrate Parkerfest West in October.
News about Club Wit's End, the monthly music and dance party downtown:
MAY 30TH, 2009 : Grandpa Musselman and His Syncopators are BACK for an encore of the hottest jazz to keep you out on the dancefloor! Even more featured vintage cocktails are coming your way, along with our favorite sweets, handmade chocolates from Chocolats Meurens! Akemi Kinukawa of Sandra Cameron Dance Center is back at 8pm for another FREE DANCE LESSON! This time, begin to learn to Charleston with the best of them! Arrive early to participate in this fantastic freebie! Doors are at 7pm, band begins at 8:30pm, with recorded music of the 1920s/30s throughout the evening for your enjoyment!
We got a press release today from Lida McGirr, the director of the first show based on Dorothy Parker material to play in Manhattan this year (there are others on the way). It is timed for Valentine's Day, a good marketing hook, to be sure. We were tipped off by DPS member Caitlin McEwan (pictured here). The press release:
Dorothy Parker: MEN!
compiled and directed by Lida McGirr
In my early 20's, I escaped to bygone times with Dorothy Parker and F. Scott Fitzgerald, times where anything went: the Depression and the gaiety, poverty and extravagance, prohibition and debauchery, saints and sinners. The literary world was on fire. Dorothy Parker was part of this world. She once said, "I was just a little Jewish girl trying to be cute." She was more than this.
She was ahead of her time in trying to make a place for herself in what was very much a man's world. And she succeeded. She wrote, competed and survived among the finest writers of her time. Her poems and witticisms show an intellect and quickness that rivalled the Benchleys and Kaufmans.
Last year, as Special Events Coordinator for the Concord Players in Massachusetts, one of my duties was to put together a night of entertainment. Dorothy Parker sprang to mind. I resurrected my Dorothy Parker books and notes and research and "Dorothy Parker Revived" was born. Caitlin McEwan, who played my daughter in a production of "The Glass Menagerie," came to see the show and the next thing I knew "Dorothy Parker: MEN!" came into being.
What has evolved is a review of Dorothy Parker: her quips, wisecracks, poetry, book and theater reviews, and three short stories adapted to play form. The young, spirited, gay Dorothy is contrasted with the older, wiser, disappointed, but still hopeful, Mrs. Parker, and the theme of relationships -- young and old, naive and jaded, hopeful and desperate -- runs throughout the piece, making it a fitting way to spend Valentine's Day, and every day. An evening chock full of laughter, gasps of recognition and, ultimately, a celebration of the human condition, life and love.
. . . I must go on, till ends my rope, Who from my birth was cursed with hope. - Dorothy Parker
Pieces include: "One Perfect Rose" "Love Song" "Fighting Words" "General Review of the Sex Situation" "You Were Perfectly Fine" "A Telephone Call" "Here We Are" "The Waltz" "Too Bad" "A Fairly Sad Tale" "The Lady's Reward" ... a bouquet of quips, wisecracks, short poems, and reviews ... ... and, of course, "MEN"
CAST: Lida McGirr George Pappas* Caitlin McEwan Andy Junk Maureen Kenny*
*Member of Actors' Equity Association Equity Approved Showcase
The Dorothy Parker Society chapter in the City of Angels hosted its first holiday event. As chapter prez Adrienne Crew reports: "Here's a picture of the gang at the Beverly Wilshire as we celebrated the end of the year with a few drinks. Kenneth Branagh stalked us through the night--he followed us into both of the hotel's bars. who knew he was such a fan of Mrs. Parker!"
There are more Los Angeles events coming up:
1/21/09 around 7:30 pm for drinks at Lucy's El Adobe on Melrose to play word games
The Dorothy Parker Society Los Angeles Chapter will meet Wednesday, December 17 at 7:30 pm, for a drink at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel, 9500 Wilshire Boulevard, in Beverly Hills. Mere minutes from Dorothy's many houses off Canon Drive, where John O'Hara would often entertain her with his buddies who met there weekly for drinks and mayhem. His regular group included James Cagney, Sidney Skolsky, Robert Benchley, Clifford Odets, Gilbert Roland, Cedric Hardwicke, and Peter Lorre.
After a quick drink, we will walk down Wilshire Blvd to admire the holiday windows of Saks and Barneys. The closest LA gets to Manhattan at holiday time, especially if the weather is cold enough for coats.
Contact Adrienne Crew for details or reservations: adrienne (AT) dorothyparker (DOT) com
The Dorothy Parker Society holiday party on Thursday, Dec. 4 (see below) is FREE. No admission. Yay. Tickets are $12; but all DPS guests get a free drink. Tell them at the door you are with the DPS. Galapagos Art Space is the best. And the show starts at 7, not 8.
Now there is NO reason to miss it. Let's see how many Brooklyn residents we can get... and if your office party was canceled this year because of the recession, here is a place to bring your co-workers for what promises to be a fantastic night.
The Dorothy Parker Society is having its annual New York City holiday party, and for the first time ever, we are holding it in Brooklyn! So for all Brooklyn residents, you have no reason to skip this one. This Thursday, Dec. 4, 7-11 p.m., join us at the Galapagos Art Space, 16 Main Street in DUMBO, with Michael Arenella and his 11-piece Dreamland Orchestra for a festive evening of music and dancing. Come out in Twenties attire too, if you can manage it.
Tickets are $12 each; cash bar. This is the orchestra that performed on Governors Island last summer; they are the best Roaring Twenties orchestra in the city. In addition, Friday is the 75th anniversary of Repeal, when Prohibition ended, so this is an extra reason to make it to the party.
By Subway: "F" train to York St. (First Stop in Brooklyn) -Walk downhill on Jay St. one block to Front Street -Go left on Front St. four blocks to Main Street -Go right on Main St, walk two blocks to Water Street -Galapagos is on the far corner of Main and Water
Over the years we have heard of Dorothy Parker's work being adapted around the world: France, Ireland, Sweden, Wales, and more. For the first time, we have learned of a show in South Africa. The performance is written and performed by Emily Child in Cape Town. "Gone Dottie" is a one woman show, and the recent graduate of the University of Cape Town has played "Five Questions" with us to tell us about it.
Why do you think Dorothy Parker's work is relevant in today's world?
Dorothy’s stories are about relationships – love and loneliness and loss. That kind of subject matter will never lose its relevance and importance. Dottie’s sense of humour makes these themes universally accessible. Everyone has “been there” at some stage of their lives.
Why will audiences be drawn to Parker's material and what she has to say?
Well… it’s funny! I think that’s a pretty big draw-card. Obviously, being Dorothy, there is a darkness and a sadness that undercuts a lot of her humour but that's where the greatest comedy lies – in truth. I think audiences appreciate her truth. Dottie certainly tells it like it is. I know that’s something I look for in a show.
What stories are you adapting in your show?
We have adapted 5 stories – Sentiment, But the One on the Right, The Garter, A Young woman in Green Lace and A Telephone Call.
Are there a lot of Parker fans in Cape Town?
To be honest, I’m not so sure but I hope so! Or at least.. I hope that by the time "Gone Dottie" is finished there are many many more!
What is the venue your show is being presented, and what will audiences see? Film clips are part of it?
We are performing in the Arena Theatre on 37 Orange Street, Cape Town. It is a warm, intimate little space with a great bar and a happy atmosphere. Film clips are indeed included in the show... the audience gets little glimpses into the world that surrounds Dottie... a taste of the 1920’s in the glamorous detail that film has to offer. They get to actually see the lifestyle on which Dottie comments. One of her stories has even been converted into a silent movie – live, on stage! That's not something that happens very often!
Thanks, Emily, and good luck with the show, and starting a chapter of the Dorothy Parker Society in Cape Town.
INFO: The show started this weekend and runs through November 15, Monday – Saturday. The show starts at 8PM. Tickets are R60. R45 for students, pensioners and block bookings (more than 10). The booking number: 0823341904. Emily says, "People can feel free to dress up 1920’s style! We want the whole evening to be an experience more than just a show!"
The highlight of the event will be the Saturday, October 4th Awards Dinner.
* This year's Annual Humor Awards Dinner will be held at the Harvard Club of New York, one of New York City's exclusive gentlemen's and ladies' clubs in the heart of the fabulous theatre district where Mr. Benchley and the members of the Algonquin Round Table hung out. Thanks to the kind support of Joseph Handlin, a New York City Benchley fan, we are able to hold our dinner in this private club, an impressive venue that most of us would not otherwise have the opportunity to enjoy. You will not want to miss this event which will be the year's largest gathering of Benchley fans.
* At this event Madeleine Kane of Bayside, N.Y., will be presented with the Robert Benchley Award for Humor. In addition to Ms. Kane's first place entry, Guide for the Opera Impaired, we'll be honoring our medalists in this year's competition, which was judged by Bob Newhart. They are Mike Tuck (2nd) of Hopkins, Minn. for Welcome to America, Jesse Levy (3rd) of North Hollywood, Calif. for How to Watch a Sad Movie and Retain Your Manliness, and Denise G. Weeks (4th) of Richardson, Texas for How to Start Your Own Band.
* The cost for dinner (including tax and tip) is $100 per person and includes wine with dinner.
* Dress: optional black tie and/or 1920s-1940s period.
Also on the Card
For those in town Friday early evening there will be an opportunity to meet for cocktails and dinner.
The Saturday program will kick off with brunch from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on a 1920s-style yacht cruising around the Island of Manhattan. The cost of this event is $75. Dress: casual/boating and/or 1920s-1940s period. --SOLD OUT--
At 5:30 p.m. on Saturday we'll gather for pre-dinner cocktails at a location closely associated with Mr.Benchley.
On Sunday, the New York City Fascinating Crimes chapter of the RBS will sponsor a special event.
This will be our fourth time gathering in New York. The Society has also held it's annual event in Boston (2005) and Los Angeles (2006).
The preferred hotel for the event is The Roosevelt Hotel on Madison Avenue at 45th Street. Note that as a small group we have not been able to arrange a convention rate at The Roosevelt Hotel. You are on your own to book a hotel room.
Don't miss this event which will be the largest 2008 gathering of Robert Benchley fans. Commitments to attend have already been made by members of Robert Benchley Society Chapters in:
* Ann Arbor, Mich. * Boston, Mass. * New York City * Washington State
This will be our fourth time gathering in New York. The Society has also held it's annual event in Boston (2005) and Los Angeles (2006). How to Sign Up
Register for the Robert Benchley Society 2008 Annual Gathering using the PayPal "Buy Now" button below and you will be taken to a page with details of all the events and instructions for buying the $100 per person Saturday dinner at an exclusive private club and the $75 person Saturday brunch cruise. The PayPal billing information will show "Mary4Nails." Once you pay you will be automatically redirected to the RBS Annual Gathering Registration Confirmation page; if it does not automatically forward, hit the PayPal button from return to vendor.
The price for registration is Now through September 4th $10 September 5 through 19 $15 After September 19 $20
The recent article in City Scoops says there is a Sept. 20 event at Broadway Baby Bistro. That is an error; the event was held Aug. 20. However, there is a walking tour on Sunday, Sept. 21. Noon at the Algonquin Hotel. Cost is $15. All info is here. If you can't make that one, the next is Sunday, Oct. 26. Walks are held rain or shine.
This video shows Bill being interviewed about The Road to Ruin.
We are happy that DPS member William Zeffiro has his new musical opening this week. The Road to Ruin is a throwback to the old musicals of the 1920s. The 1928 Exploitation Musical has "sex, bad mommies, worse daddies, bottled water and Christians conspire to bring down Little Sally Canfield, 'The Nicest Girl at Central High.' "
Bill plays "5 Questions" to talk about the show. Ticket info is on the bottom of the article. We asked Bill:
What would happen if Gov. Sarah Palin attended The Road to Ruin?
If Governor Palin attended R2R she would think it was 100% serious (which it is) and she would be forever bereft that she hadn't seen the show before her current predicament.
What drew you to this material?
I have always been drawn to the 20's, as reflected through my lifelong love of Mrs. Parker, the music of the Gershwins, Rodgers and Hart, Noel Coward etc, and the plays of Kaufman and Hart. Through my six year friendship with Kay Swift, I was fortunate enough to have a direct connection with one of the great ladies (and composers) of the era. Kay actually knew all of those incredible people and I loved to hear her anecdotes. Because of this, I've always felt a bit closer to the 20's than your average aging baby boomer.
What will audiences see and hear in The Road to Ruin?
I think audiences will be struck by the number of parallels there are between the 20's and our current insanity. We had three putz presidents in a row from 1921-1933 (Harding, Coolidge, and Hoover) and a lot of the nonsense that we now take for granted began in the 20's. I have all the ladies of the town guzzling bottled water laced with radium (Radithor) to improve their constitutions and lose weight. Radithor was a real product, and quite successful in achieving weight loss. It also resulted in hair loss, holes in the skull and death. But no one died fat! My character, young Jimmy Goodhue read the best seller of 1925 and '26, The Man Nobody Knows. This was one of the first books to say that corporate greed and the desire to legally rob the economy had a basis in Christianity. Sound familiar? The show also has fun with meditation, aphrodisiacs, right to lifers and the pro choice folks. The score has the sound of the 20's and the lyrics evoke the theater songs of the time (although I have allowed myself to be a bit more naughty!)
What has been the most fun about working on this project?
Everything!!! I must hasten to add that seeing this idea that I had in 1998 and began working on it in 2002 come to life with this incredible cast is a dream come true! I can't believe this many people are bringing so much talent and conviction to one of my ideas.
Have you ever been on the Road to Ruin, and how do others get there?
I have been on The Road To Ruin, The Causeway To Catastrophe, and ever so briefly on The Path To Pleasure.
Thanks, Bill! If you are interested in attending: The 45th Street Theater at 8PM September 18, 19, 21, 25, and 28th October 1 at 4:30 PM. Tickets are available at www.nymf.org or at Ovation Tix (212) 352-3101.
The Los Angeles chapter of the Dorothy Parker Society presents an evening of frolic and LA history in the 20s on Thursday, July 31, at 6:30-10 pm at Casa Del Mar, 1910 Ocean Way, Santa Monica, CA 90405. Phone: (310) 581-5533.
We will have time to get to know each other during cocktail hour between 6:30-7:30 in the Casa Del Mar bar. Around 7:30 pm, historian Alison Jefferson will give a brief slide show about the special history of the beach area, nicknamed "The Inkwell," in front of the Casa Del Mar, the site of a beach club popular with Dorothy Parker's crowd in the 20s and 30s.
Alison Jefferson works for Historic Resources Group as a historian. She has a Bachelors of Arts in Sociology from Pomona College in Claremont, California and her Master's in Historic Preservation from the University of Southern California. Her research focuses on Southern California vacation spots frequented by African Americans during the segregation in the 20s and 30s.
The meeting is open to the public. Invite your friends.
We finally have photos and video clips of the Lawn Party on Governors Island from a few weeks ago. It was such a fun time. There were hundreds of people there. The music was fantastic, the vintage outfits classy, and the atmosphere of the old island was special. There is going to be another 2-day event soon. Enjoy the photos, and we will have another party soon.
The only subway running on Sunday is the "R" to Whitehall Street. Use the Trip Planner from the MTA for more info. The complete Ferry Schedule is here. If you have never visited, download a map of Governors Island.
* Kids are welcome. It is a great park for families with kids.
* There are bicycle paths, if you have a bike, take it. The island also have free bikes to loan out, first come, first served.
* There is no restaurant on the island, so bring your own food and drinks. There is also no ATM on the island, if you need cash. Cell phones do work (its only 800 yards from Manhattan, and even less from Brooklyn).
The Dorothy Parker Society will have a table set up.
Don't miss the first Dorothy Parker Society party on Governors Island! It will be Sunday, June 8th, beginning at 11:30 a.m. at the beautiful and historic national landmark. Come dressed in 1920s clothes for a lawn party with live music and dancing, or wear a vintage swimsuit and enter the pageant! Pack a picnic basket and bring your lunch and drinks for the day, take along a blanket too. The DPS will have a good spot staked out.
Under a shady grove of centuries-old trees, caressed by fresh sea air, a sprawling green surrounded by historic officers’ quarters and 18th century naval ramparts becomes the setting for a true Gatsby affair. Widely anticipated by flappers, sporting gents and tiny tots alike, this event has been featured annually by The New York Times.
In addition to Michael Arenella’s 11-piece Dreamland Orchestra, Gypsy-Jazz virtuoso Stephane Wrembel and band will join us on Sunday; his guitar-driven band serves up “Le Jazz Hot” like no other.
A wide array of music, activities, games and contests are open for all ages to enjoy:
You could call it Sex and the City circa 1928. Ms. Parker's tale takes place during the Roaring Twenties but the timeless story could have easily been written yesterday.
Set in upper class Manhattan the day after a chic cocktail party, Adam (Mario Brassard) insists on knowing why Evelyn (Darlene Violette) is giving him the silent treatment. Could the seductive Florence Leaming (Stephanie Szostak) be to blame? With Ms. Parker's biting dialogue and acerbic wit, all's fair in love and war when the two meet in a battle of The Sexes.
The Sexes was directed by Bridget Palardy (currently producer for Nylon TV) and features Mario Brassard (As The World Turns, Spin City), Darlene Violette (30 Rock, Law & Order) and Stephanie Szostak (The Devil Wears Prada, The Sopranos). Mario Brassard also produced the film and adapted the story with Darlene Violette.
If you have not made up your mind if you want to attend our next big Dorothy Parker Society party, just read who will be attending. We have 4 fantastic actors who will be at the splashy party on May 14 to celebrate The Ladies of the Corridorcoming back to bookstores. The party is free and open to the public at Hurley’s, 232 W 48th St. (between Broadway and Eighth). It is right next door to the Longacre Theatre, the same place The Ladies of the Corridor debuted in October 1953. The party starts at 6:30 p.m.
Editor Marion Meade will give a brief talk, the new book will be available, and there will be a cash bar. We will have a staged reading of two selections from the play. The actors we have lined up are: Glenn B. Stoops, Maureen Van Trease, Natalie Wilder, and Verna Pierce. Their brief biographies:
Glenn Stoops has worked with many NYC based companies including Boomerang Theatre Company, Quest Theater Ensemble, Blunt Theater Company, Staten Island Shakespearean Theatre, Banned in Warwick Productions, Trinity Players, and Theatreworks USA. Regional credits include NJ Rep (where he is a member), Shadowlawn Stage, Civic Theatre of Central Florida (Orlando, FL), Beechwood Theatre Company (Newport, RI), Playhouse on the Square (Memphis, TN), Sterling Renaissance Festival (Sterling, NY), Nebraska Theatre Caravan (Omaha, NE), EPCOT Center, and Universal Studios Florida. He can currently be seen on Liberty Island performing his one person show based on the life of Auguste Bartholdi.
Maureen Van Trease, member of AEA, is currently in a production of "No Man Can Serve Two Masters" with Third Eye Theatre Company at Times Square Arts Center through May 10th, where she has the pleasure of playing a sociopathic, delusional housewife. A fledgling playwright and a big Dorothy Parker fan, her latest project is entitled "Those Whistling Lads: The Poetry and Short Stories of Dorothy Parker", an adaptation for the stage of five of Dorothy's short stories and five of her poems that also explores the events in her life that led to these works. A full production of which is set for the near future.
Natalie Wilder -- (AEA/SAG) – New York credits include Mouth in NOT I, Phaedra in the NY premiere of PHAEDRA’S LOVE by Sarah Kane, Olivia in TWELFTH NIGHT, Lady Macbeth in MACBETH, Lady Anne in RICHARD III, Hypatia in MISALLIANCE, and Beth in DINNER WITH FRIENDS. Natalie is a member of NJ Repertory Company, where she has appeared as Diversion in SPAIN, a co-production with Playwrights Theatre of NJ and where she originated the role of Rachel Gold in the world premiere of APOSTASY. She is also a member of Oldcastle Theatre Company, where she has appeared as the Bogle in JACOB MARLEY’S CHRISTMAS CAROL, multiple roles in HARD TIMES by Charles Dickens, and where she will appear this fall playing multiple roles in A TALE OF TWO CITIES. Regional credits include Maria in EL GRANDE DE COCA COLA, Celia in THE CURATE SHAKESPEARE AS YOU LIKE IT, and Janet in THE ROCKY HORROR SHOW. Natalie is a proud member of The Dorothy Parker Society.
Verna Pierce is a member of Equity.
The party is free and open to the public. To attend please RSVP to: KEVIN (AT) DOROTHYPARKER (DOT) COM by May 12.
One of Dorothy Parker’s most overlooked pieces of writing is coming back to print on April 29. The Ladies of the Corridor is a 1953 Broadway drama she co-wrote with Arnaud d’Usseau, a Hollywood and Broadway veteran.
Today we launched new section of the web site with information about the book and play: * An overview of the play, which includes an audio clip of Dorothy Parker herself talking about it; * A 1989 interview with Arnaud d’Usseau (he died in 1990) and a brief audio clip of him discussing Parker and the play; * An interview with Marion Meade, Parker’s biographer. She wrote a new introduction for the book.
But it would not be the Dorothy Parker Society without a splashy party, right! Of course we are hosting the launch party! Save the date: Wednesday, May 14, 6:30 p.m. at Hurley’s, 232 W 48th St. (between Broadway and Eighth). It is right next door to the Longacre Theatre, the same place The Ladies of the Corridor debuted in October 1953. We will be on the third floor for the party, which is cash bar. Hurley’s is a fantastic spot, and beloved by those in the theater business. The book will be available. We also have lined up actors who will perform a brief staged reading of parts of the play.
The party is open to the public. To attend please RSVP to: KEVIN (AT) DOROTHYPARKER (DOT) COM by May 12.
Next week on the News Page we will have more information on the fantastic actors who are going to be at the party. It will certainly be one of the most fun book parties the DPS has ever hosted. It isn’t every day a new Dorothy Parker book comes out.
The Mysterious Bookshop is the place to be on Tuesday, Feb. 26 at 6:30 for a reading and party to celebrate the publication of The Vicious Circle (Pegasus Books), a collection of crime and mystery stories written by members of the Algonquin Round Table and their friends. The editor of the book is Otto Penzler, a well-regarded author in the mystery field, and proprietor of The Mysterious Bookshop, 58 Warren Street. Dorothy Parker’s short story “Big Blonde” is included in the collection. In addition, Robert Benchley’s classic “The Mystery of the Poisoned Kipper” is featured. His grandson, Nat Benchley, will attend and read a selection. The book signing and party is open to the public, we hope you can attend; the DPS will go out for drinks afterward.
Dorothy Parker events in October were a lot of fun to attend. Yesterday was a nice turnout at the Bowery Poetry Club for the Parker lecture that was part of the Poets in NY series put on by Rattapallax (special thanks to Publisher Ram Devineni for the fine job). Earlier this month, we had a big Parkerfest; the photos are now online. Just one week later was Dorothy Parker Day in Long Branch; see the many photos from that fun day. The best was the dog parade that went past Mrs. Parker's birthplace. It was fun to see the doggies sniffing around.
Don't miss out on any events, just sign up for the e-newsletter.
Without Dorothy Parker and the Algonquin Round Table, would there be a New Yorker magazine in 2007? On Sunday, Oct. 28, at 3 p.m. is a talk and discussion titled "Dorothy Parker and the Birth of the New Yorker" given by Kevin Fitzpatrick, author of A Journey into Dorothy Parker’s New York. The talk is at the Bowery Poetry Club, part of the Great Poets in NYC series sponsored by Rattapallax, a journal of international writing. The address is 308 Bowery (off Bleecker) and admission is free.
Actress-Playwright RoseLynn Katz will perform a one-woman show on November 3 in Asheville, North Carolina. The show is entitled The Devil Touched My Tongue: The World and Wit of Dorothy Parker, and is based on Parker's work. It will be shown at 35 Below.
The production is directed by Bernie Hauserman. Tickets are $15.00 and can be purchased by calling the Asheville Community Theatre at 254-1320 or by contacting ashevilletheatre.org.
Asheville Community Theatre is located in historic downtown Asheville, at 35 East Walnut Street one block northwest of City Hall. Neighbors of ACT are: The Thomas Wolfe Memorial and Visitors Center, the Renaissance Asheville Hotel, and Magnolia's Raw Bar & Grill.
Dorothy Parker Day is back! As previously announced, the second Parker Day at the birthplace of the author-poet-wit is Sunday, Oct. 14, in Long Branch, New Jersey. I just got the map of the dog walk, which will pass by Parker's Birthplace.
Dorothy Parker adored her dogs. To the annoyance of many she was rarely seen without them, so as part of their one day celebration, The Dorothy Parker Day Committee is sponsoring a Dog Walk. The committee is made up of members of the Long Branch Historical Association, the Long Branch Council of the Arts, the Long Branch Free Public Library, the West End Merchants, and the Dorothy Parker Society. It is inviting all dog lovers to walk their pets in a parade past the literary landmark where Mrs. Parker was born on Ocean Ave.
Owners are encouraged to dress their dogs up as famous literary characters. Prizes will be awarded for the best costumes and the first 50 dogs will be given Doggie Gift Bags with dog scarves, treats and other goodies.
Deacon Eugene Somma of St. Michaels RC Church will offer a Blessing of the Pets. Walk begins in St. Michael's western-most parking lot on North Lake Drive, will pass Mrs. Parker’s birthplace on Ocean Avenue, and then head back around scenic Takanassee Lake. There will be a shorter route for short legged dogs. The walk is free, open to the public and in the true spirit of Mrs. Parker is just for fun...
Other events on Sunday are a book talk and readings at the public library, a luncheon and events in West End, and cocktail party. Dorothy Parker's birthplace was the first literary landmark for an author's birthplace in the state, as designated by Friends of Libraries USA.
Later this week is Parkerfest 2007. It will be held Oct. 4-6 in New York and is our 8th annual event. The Robert Benchley Society is going to join us too. For Saturday evening, we have broken the events into the separate banquet and the party. Both have open bars, so this is a combined four hours of unlimited cocktails, which Mrs. Parker would appreciate.
Thursday Oct. 4, 9 p.m. Dorothy Parker Reading, Mo Pitkin's House of Satisfaction Titled "The Potable Dorothy Parker" and co-produced by Celia Bressack and Stephanie Sellars, this is the second year in a row that this unique ensemble has presented Mrs. Parker's work in the East Village. The address is 34 Avenue A, admission is a suggested $5.
Friday, Oct. 5 Happy Hour at the Algonquin Hotel, 6-8 p.m. Join the Dorothy Parker and Robert Benchley societies for cocktails in the lobby of the Algonquin, 59 W. 44th Street. Make new friends or renew acquaintances with old ones. We will be in the lobby, just look for the big group that is having the most fun: that will be the Parker and Benchley societies.
Saturday, Oct. 6 Dorothy Parker-Robert Benchley Walking Tour, 11 a.m. Meet in the lobby of the Algonquin Hotel for a 2-hour walk to the former haunts of the Vicious Circle, with many stops along the way of places associated with Parker and Benchley: speakeasies, offices, homes, theaters. A special tribute to the 85th anniversary of The Treasurer's Report. Wear comfortable shoes. $15.
Lunch at the Round Table, 1:15 p.m. Come to the Algonquin Hotel and soak in where the legends once roamed. We will have lunch at the Round Table (and if the crowd is too large, at the smaller satellite tables that are just as swell). Cash only.
Immediately following lunch, if you are interested in the Parker or Benchley societies, meet the officers and directors of each.
Robert Benchley-Dorothy Parker Banquet, 6:30 p.m. A two-hour open bar plus full dinner, $50 per person (cheap!) There are still some tickets left for this, so RSVP now. We will be in the private dining room of Pete's Tavern, the historic literary landmark bar-restaurant in Gramercy Park. The Benchley Society awards its annual humor prizes. Attire: 1920s-1930s, black tie optional, speakeasy era dress encouraged. Pete's is on the corner of 18th Street and Irving Place. Seating is strictly limited, so you must RSVP to attend.
Dorothy Parker Bathtub Gin Ball, 10:30 p.m. until ? Two-hour open bar, plus appetizers, live entertainment, $55 per person. Not many tickets still available RSVP today. The big event of Parkerfest is always the party. The year, we are going to the oldest drinking establishment in Manhattan, The Bridge Café. It is right next to the Brooklyn Bridge in lower Manhattan, and has been around since 1794. Attire: 1920s-1930s, black tie optional, speakeasy era dress encouraged. The Bridge Cafe is on 279 Water Street. Attendance is strictly limited, so you must RSVP to attend.
TO RSVP: YOU MUST EMAIL KEVIN (AT) DOROTHYPARKER (DOT) COM.
In August at the birthday party for Matilda at the Algonquin Hotel, Jordan and Kimadopted a rescue cat. The two members of the Dorothy Parker Society took part in a unique event during the media circus, where the North Shore Animal League set up an adoption station. The couple from New Jersey adopted an adorable feline, who they (of course) named Dorothy. More than six weeks later, Dorothy is right at home, as you can tell by the photos Jordan and Kim emailed me. At a recent house party, Jordan says, "She was so well-behaved, letting the guests pet her and feed her, then she was just resting in the corner, or mingling. Then finally she fell asleep on the window sill after being a great hostess."
Parkerfest 2007 is Oct. 4-6 in New York. Plus, the Robert Benchley Society is going to join us again, which always adds an air of fun and mischief to the weekend. Don't miss out! The schedule:
Thursday, Oct. 4 Dorothy Parker Reading, Mo Pitkin’s House of Satisfaction, 9-11 p.m. Titled “The Potable Dorothy Parker” and co-produced by Celia Bressack and Stephanie Sellars, this is the second year in a row that this unique ensemble has presented Mrs. Parker’s work in the East Village. The address is 34 Avenue A, admission is a suggested $5.
Friday, Oct. 5 Happy Hour at the Algonquin Hotel, 6-8 p.m. Join the Dorothy Parker and Robert Benchley societies for cocktails in the lobby of the Algonquin, 59 W. 44th Street. Make new friends or renew acquaintances with old ones.
Saturday, Oct. 6 Dorothy Parker-Robert Benchley Walking Tour, 11 a.m. Meet in the lobby of the Algonquin Hotel for a 2-hour walk to the former haunts of the Vicious Circle, with many stops along the way of places associated with Parker and Benchley. A special tribute to the 85th anniversary of The Treasurer’s Report. Wear comfortable shoes. $15.
Lunch at the Round Table, 1:15 p.m. Come to the Algonquin Hotel and soak in where the legends once roamed. We will have lunch at the Round Table (and if the crowd is too large, at the smaller satellite tables that are just as swell). Cash only, per person.
Immediately following lunch, if you are interested in the Parker or Benchley societies, meet the officers and directors of each.
Robert Benchley-Dorothy Parker Banquet, 6:30 p.m. We will be in the private dining room of Pete’s Tavern, the historic literary landmark bar-restaurant in Gramercy Park. The Benchley Society awards its annual humor prizes. The event is a two-hour open bar plus dinner, $50 per person. Attire: 1920s-1930s, black tie optional, speakeasy era dress encouraged. Pete’s is on the corner of 18th Street and Irving Place. Seating is strictly limited, so you must RSVP to attend.
Dorothy Parker Bathtub Gin Ball, 10:00 p.m. The big event of Parkerfest is always the party. The year, we are going to the oldest drinking establishment in Manhattan, The Bridge Café. It is right next to the Brooklyn Bridge in lower Manhattan, and has been around since 1794. The event is a two-hour open bar plus live entertainment, $50 per person. Attire: 1920s-1930s, black tie optional, speakeasy era dress encouraged. The Bridge Cafe is on 279 Water Street. Attendance is strictly limited, so you must RSVP to attend.
TO RSVP: YOU MUST EMAIL KEVIN (at) DOROTHYPARKER (dot) COM ASAP.
The first annual Algonquin West Hollywood Literary Award Soiree event will be held on Saturday, September 29 at the Pacific Design Center, 8687 Melrose Avenue, West Hollywood, CA 90069, at 7:00 p.m. The event will honor the literary achievements of acclaimed author Mark Salzman and will be a benefit for PEN in the Classroom, a writing program that focuses on under-served high school students in Southern California. Tickets are $20.
The benefit will include a performance of Gertrude Stein's "Miss Furr and Miss Skeene" and a staged reading, "Celebrating Dorothy and Her Friends", created by local theatre artist Michael Kearns and featuring a host of celebrated actors (including Bruce Davison, Mary Jo Catlett, John Glover, Tonya Pinkins, Gordon Thomson and Chloe Webb with Wayne Moore on piano). Material will be culled largely from the writings of Dorothy Parker and other members of the legendary Algonquin Round Table (a group of writers, critics, actors and wits who met for lunch every day at New York's Algonquin Hotel in the wake of World War I).
If you are interested in attending, please contact Corey Roskin at email@example.com with your name, phone number and number of people in your party. Please also send your check made out to PEN USA to the following address. No actual tickets will be issued, but you will receive a receipt of payment after we receive your check -- and your name will be on a guest list at the door.
Send checks to:
City of West Hollywood 8300 Santa Monica Blvd. West Hollywood, CA 90069 Attn: Corey Roskin
LONG BRANCH, New Jersey – The Dorothy Parker Day Committee has announced that the world-renowned poet, writer and critic born in Long Branch will be celebrated in a unique way on Sunday, Oct. 14, 2007.
The day-long Sunday program pays tribute to four things Mrs. Parker herself enjoyed: books, luncheons, her dogs, and cocktails:
The Long Branch Free Public Library will present Parker's work;
A "Round Table luncheon" will channel her spirit at local eateries;
A dog parade will pass Parker’s birthplace on Ocean Avenue;
A late afternoon speakeasy party will toast her wit and charm.
Dorothy Parker was born at her family's beach cottage on Aug. 22, 1893, in West End, a village in Monmouth County, some sixty miles south of New York City. Her parents, Henry and Eliza Rothschild, were middle-class residents of Manhattan who vacationed in the charming seaside town. Parker, who died in 1967 in New York, was a bestselling poet and short story writer. She gained immortal fame as a member of the Algonquin Round Table, a collection of writers, playwrights, actors and wits who lunched at the Algonquin Hotel in the 1920s. Parker was also an Oscar-nominated screenwriter, a playwright, and the first female drama critic on Broadway. She also was a tireless fighter for social justice, civil rights and left-wing causes.
“Dorothy Parker Day is a nice tribute to an author with ties to the community, and we believe our activities pay tribute to her in a meaningful and fun way,” said Beth Woolley, of the Long Branch Historical Association.
"Mrs. Parker might be remembered for being a quintessential New Yorker, but her life started on the Jersey Shore, and we're happy to commemorate that," said Kevin Fitzpatrick, author of “A Journey into Dorothy Parker’s New York.” 2007 DOROTHY PARKER DAY SCHEDULE: Long Branch Free Public Library, 328 Broadway Library Program 10:30 A.M. - Coffee and refreshments - Opening Ceremony - Readings of selected Dorothy Parker works - Screening of “The Sexes” a short film based on Parker’s 1927 short story
Lunch at the "Round Table" West End, 12:30 P.M. Participating eateries will take the place of the famous Algonquin Hotel for lunch with friends.
Dorothy Parker Dog Parade St. Michael’s Church, 796 Ocean Avenue (gather in parking lot on North Lake Drive), 2:30 P.M. Dorothy Parker adored her dogs, so dog lovers are encouraged to walk their pets in a parade past the literary landmark where Mrs. Parker was born. Owners are encouraged to dress their dogs up as famous literary characters. Walk begins in parking lot on North Lake Drive and will pass Mrs. Parker’s birthplace on Ocean Avenue.